Lisez la Fleur (Read the Flower)
Synopsis - from goodreads
Twenty-year-old Lorine Stringfield’s life is about to change forever, and she doesn’t even know it.
Weighted down by the death of her father, her overbearing mother, and the sadness of her little brother, Lorine has less than high hopes for her family’s trip to France. But all of that changes when she is invited to visit the illustrious Chateau du Jumeaux – a premiere nightclub that only the most privileged attend. Lorine jumps at the chance to do something for herself, but gets more than she bargained for when she discovers the terrible truth: the chateau isn’t a nightclub at all, but a feeding ground for perhaps the most ruthless of beings, the creatures known as vampires.
Part one in the Fleur Passages, a collection of novellas to later be sewn into one novel, The Beautiful Beginning starts the epic tale of Lorine. This novella marks the first in a series of ebooks in which readers can take part with "Reader Participation" -- inside of the ebook there is a question directly linked to the next volume in the Fleur Passages, and readers can vote for their favorite answer, to have a say in what happens next!
Voting closes on: June 28th, 2013.
Genres and information: this novella series is classified as Mature YA/New Adult Fiction, Paranormal Romance, and Old-Fashioned Horror/Suspense; this novella series contains violence, and may not be suitable for younger readers.
Excerpt from Lisez la Fleur
Maybe this would open up a new chapter in my life. Maybe now, with this, I would step out, and start doing things for myself, start standing up to my mother, and start beginning the biggest journey I had ever ventured on up until now: the journey where I found out who I was, what I wanted out of life, and how I would go about making my dreams a reality; it was a journey that I had started already, but was far from completing. Every leg of life had some sort of trial or journey that was large and important, and I wasn’t fool enough to think that after this was accomplished, my learning would be over, but right now, it was the journey that I was faced with. I already knew who I was at my core, but I still needed time to figure out the details.
“Good news,” my mother said with a smile, addressing Honoré with raised eyebrows that made Rick grumble again, pointedly ignored by his wife. “I’ve just finished looking up your nightclub, Honoré, and it sounds fabulous. Lorine will definitely—”
“Be accepting your invitation,” I finished for my mother as I stepped forward, Josh letting go of my sleeve as I did. I glanced back to see him grinning for the first time in a long time with my mother around, and I got the distinct impression that he was proud of me for speaking first. I then glanced at my mother, who looked angry for a moment, before her mouth curled into a satisfied smile; obviously she was alright with me stepping in, so long as I still did what she wanted, though that wasn’t the reason why I’d said yes at all. “I’d love to go tonight. Where should I get transportation at?” I questioned as I turned my gaze this time to Honoré, still feeling giddy when his sunset eyes met mine, though more in control this time.
Honoré smiled lengthily at me, as if he had just won some sort of battle, though it had been me who’d won, before he extended the envelope-bound invitation, and asked where we would be staying. When we told him Tours, he beamed, and then referred to me a private train station that had recently been built specifically for le Château de Jumeaux, which apparently was owned by his grandfather, and had, until the nightclub’s opening, been a private establishment, only seen by passerby from afar, as its grounds were filled with trees, and were kept equally private, ranging over forty acres in all. My heart beat in anticipation as Honoré described the castle to us, which had apparently been built in the Renaissance era, and which he assured held some beautiful artwork; I loved buildings as well as paintings, and though I hadn’t mentioned this, Honoré appeared to know anyway, casting me a knowing grin as he mentioned the architecture.
“Please be sure to wear something formal, to keep with the traditional ambiance,” Honoré told me once he was done explaining how to get to the castle’s train station, a ticket for which was included in the envelope that he handed me. Then, he again took my hand, and kissed it, and my whole body warmed. “It shall be a pleasure to have you, Madamoiselle Lorine. My family, our guests and I look forward to meeting you. I can guarantee that you’ll be most unwilling to leave,” he told me, his secret smile returning as his sunset eyes’ brilliant color bored into my heart one last time, before he released my hand, straightened, and bid us all grandeur farewell.
My mother twittered on about his charm and humor as Honoré quickly disappeared into the crowd surrounding the café and the train station, as if he were mist vanishing with the heat of a shining summer’s day, sure that he’d been joking about me never wanting to leave. I joined in with her laughter despite myself, and I heard a few surprising chuckles from Josh and Rick too, but never once did I understand his real meaning – until it was much too late.
Never once did I suspect that his secret smile had had more lying behind it, and that my triumph in speaking had all been planned – as had our meeting, the table where my brother and had I sat, and the absence of the last party member for that night’s functions. Never once did I suspect that that smile was more than secret—
That it was also dangerous, and hid more than intentions.
But, if I had noticed all of that, or any of it, then I would never have had a story to tell, or a fight to win.
Bridging the Gap - Reader Participation
Have you ever read a book and wished that the plot would take a different turn? Have you ever wished that you could change the setting of a scene, insert dialogue, or make a scene longer?
Have you ever wished that you, the reader, could have a say in what happened next in your favorite book, aside from fan-fiction?
Well, now you can.
Growing up, I wrote a lot of fan-fiction, because who doesn’t want the story to go their way? I’ve always felt that part of writing is re-thinking classic stories, and that the “what if” factor is part of what it takes to get the creative juices flowing. But, not everyone can be a writer, and when it came time for me to look at publishing my new novella series, the Fleur Passages, I thought about how I could give my readers the chance to participate in the creation of the story.
I love sites like Goodreads, because one of my favorite things to do is discuss writing, and reading, and my favorite books, but that didn’t seem like enough for me for this series. And that’s when I got my brilliant idea: why not have my readers vote for what they want to happen next? Why not give them some power and say? It may not be the most conventional thing, but I feel that it’s a fun thing to celebrate reading, and the impact that readers have on writers.
Readers and writers have always had a relationship, but never before has it been as close as it is now. It is of course hard for a writer to be close to their readership, because the creative process usually has to be a very secluded one in order for it to work properly (writers flock to other writers, because writing is generally a very lonely profession, where it’s mainly you, and your book, and no one else), but with things like the internet, and social media, it’s easier now than ever to let our readers know how much we appreciate them. Reader Participation, for me, is just a way to tell my readers: “I appreciate you, and your thoughts, and I want you to help me create this story, because you’re always part of it anyway.”
About the Author
Alexandra is a New Adult and Young Adult author who loves writing Fantasy, Science-Fiction, and traditional Horror stories (though she’s known to dabble in Contemporary and Poetry, too). She started writing at a young age, and is inspired by fellow writers (hats off to Eoin Colfer, Ridley Pearson, J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Madeleine L’Engle, and Jeanne DuPrau), her writing friends, and her dreams.
She is currently working on many series and stand-alones, most notably the Snowflake Triplet, her YA Fantasy/Christmas series, the Phantasmagoria Duet, her NA Fantasy series, and of course the new NA novella series the Fleur Passages, later to be sewn into one book, where readers have a say in what happens next through voting!
Google+: Alexandra Lanc
My Blog: Words of the Worlds
Goodreads: Alexandra Lanc
I love the idea of having a say in what happens next in a book! I imagine it must be tricky as the author though trying to please everyone. I cant wait to see how this goes for Alexandra. I also have a copy of this book so should be reading it soon.